proposed tz patches for Mexico, Nunavut, Vostok, etc.

Chris Newman chris.newman at
Tue Apr 3 17:46:31 UTC 2001

--On Monday, April 2, 2001 16:50 +1000 Greg Black <gjb at> wrote:
> Far too many mail clients just use
> the `EST' or whatever string they find and this leaves other
> programs in the invidious position of having to determine which
> `EST' is meant: is it US Eastern Standard Time; is it Australian
> Eastern Standard Time; or is it Australian Eastern Summer Time?

Such mail clients violate RFC 1123 page 56, an Internet standard published 
in 1989.  Furthermore, "EST" in an email date field means "US Eastern 
Standard Time" by RFC 822, an Internet standard published in 1982.  It's in 
everyone's long-term interest to expose these broken clients and get them 
replaced.  The more frequently they break, the better.

> Further research is not going to help here; we need a solution
> that does something useful and the `AEST/AEDT' proposal is the
> only one that stands a chance of being acceptable for that.

I'm afraid that citing mail software that's violating 12-year old standards 
is not a very strong justification.

A stronger justification (albeit still weak) would be to notice that many 
standards-compliant email clients include the timezone abreviation in a 
comment on the date header.  While the comment is for human consumption 
only, email has global scope so the closer to globally unique the 
abbreviations are, the better it is for human comprehension of 
international email.

		- Chris

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